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What is a Shopify sitemap?

Shopify Sitemaps are an essential tool for e-commerce website owners and other related stakeholders. In simple terms, a sitemap is an XML file that functions to increase the visibility and ease of access of specific pages within a site to human traffic or crawlers. This essentially means that sitemaps regularly updates links to increase the ease of access to pages containing collections, blog posts, related pages, products offered by businesses, or any other category of information that a website may house. Without a Shopify sitemap, searches related to a website will rarely open pages other than the website homepage. This becomes especially true when a website designer uses flash to code the website or other non-HTML language.

A sitemap, therefore, becomes an exceptional tool for any website that is intent on realizing more traffic on its individual pages. Recent changes in sitemap protocol saw its acceptance by all the major search engines, including Bing, Google, Yahoo, and Ask. Therefore, a sitemap allows developers to upload a sitemap file that any of these search engines can crawl.

With an increase in the size of a website, the general need for a sitemap increases exponentially. This enables users to navigate the website effectively and also additional index URLs.

Why is the Shopify sitemap important?

The advantages of having a sitemap are innumerable. Many of them are drawn directly from the increase in crawling activity and indexing by crawlers and human traffic. In detail, the advantages of having a sitemap are as follows.

Increased visibility by search engines

Search engines follow a structured XML format that allows them to access websites and related pages. Adding these tags to your website will therefore direct search engines to specific pages and increase crawling activity. As much as these sitemap tags do not guarantee that a search engine will crawl your website, it does, in the long run, increase visibility which is advantageous to the site.

Independence from external links

Many websites and web developers rely on external links to generate traffic to their preferred website. This, however, is not an efficient method, as a breakup in follow-up links can prevent the intended traffic from reaching the website itself. Having A sitemap eradicates the need for these external links and therefore confers more freedom to the developer or owner of the website.

Alerts search engines on changes made to a site

Regular updates are common practice in routine website maintenance. These can interrupt crawling by search engines as they may interpret this change as a difference in websites. Therefore, a sitemap will alert search engines of these minor changes, allowing continued access to the intended pages.

The choice to index pages

In a typical website setup, making updates to the sitemap is difficult but possible, with the help of a bit of coding. Some pages on a website might not be intended for viewing by the owner, and an efficient tool to work around this problem is employing the use of a Sitemap. With “nofollow” and “noindex” options available in these sitemaps, it is possible to deliberately prevent a search engine from following a URL or link on your website or prevent a specific page from being indexed.

SEO ranking

Why do developers incorporate sitemaps in their programming ? To answer this question demands an in-depth analysis of SEO ranking. The SEO ranking is simply your website’s position on a search engine result page. An improvement in the SEO ranking is a guarantee of increased traffic to the website, and this is the primary reason for the incorporation of a sitemap on the website. A Sitemap has the direct capacity to positively impact the overall search engine optimization ranking of your website and therefore improve traffic to your website.

Where to find a Shopify sitemap?

The advantages of a sitemap, as described above, are numerous. For any developer or website owner intent on guaranteeing the success of their website, a sitemap is less of an option and more of a necessity. Regardless of the size of the website, a sitemap is bound to improve the website in most major aspects. With this in mind, finding a Shopify sitemap becomes the next task to accomplish for these prospective developers and owners. With a lot of misleading information being provided on the internet, it might be difficult to navigate Shopify and obtain the sitemap files, especially because of the magnitude of products and services available on Shopify.

Finding the sitemap files on Shopify does not have to be difficult or stressful. Following proper and verified channels will eventually lead you to the right end. For Shopify, the sitemap files can easily be accessed from the root directory of your Shopify store’s primary domain, such as

What happens if you have different domains in multiple languages? The answer is simple. Shopify provides a solution in the form of the addition of these languages to the sitemap files for each of your domains.

With Shopify stores, all of them provide a sitemap.xml file for your domain. This, however, varies with the plan subscribed to by the Shopify user. Basic plans can only generate sitemap files for primary domains. On the other hand, Advanced Shopify or Shopify Plus plan generates these sitemaps for multiple domains in different languages, allowing search engines to index and crawl all of these domains.

Generated sitemap files automatically link to the available web pages, collections, products, or blog posts on the website that each has a separate sitemap that allows them to be indexed by the search engine.

How to submit your sitemap to Google Search Console?

The next step after finding the Shopify sitemap files in the root directory is submitting them to the Google Search Console. This is a validation process that allows Google to interpret these sitemap files. It enables Google to find and crawl your website.

Google Search Console

The Google Search Console is a tool provided by Google that allows website operators to monitor, maintain and troubleshoot their websites. It also helps web designers understand how their websites work and how google interacts with them. Despite the fact that it is not necessary to register your website with Google Search Console for it to appear in search results, it is an important asset in improving how Google finds and accesses your site.

Submitting the sitemap to Google Search Console

This is a simple process that involves a series of simple steps.

Verify your store with Google Search Console

This is a simple process that is aimed at validating the legitimacy of a business or store. To do this, one simply has to log in to GSC and follow the simple steps highlighted therein.

Log in to GSC

  • After completing the verification process, one should log in to their GSC account and verify their site with a domain tag or HTML tag.
  • Submit your domain in the “enter domain or subdomain” option, and Google will consequently provide you with a custom domain code to add to the DNS configuration.
  • Select your domain name provider and proceed to verify the domain. This will allow you to use GSC services.
  • Navigate to the index section of the Google Search Console and Select the "Sitemaps" icon.
  • From the drop-down menu, click on “add a new site map” and enter the sitemap file name you wish to input.
  • Finally, select the “submit” button and wait for the “successful” prompt.

Successfully completing the steps as mentioned earlier should signify the successful submission of your sitemap files. Failure to receive the “successful” prompt will signify an error that may have arisen from many different areas. Among the common probable errors are: "Could not fetch the sitemap" or "Indexed, not submitted in sitemap".

In conclusion, Shopify sitemaps are among the best sitemaps available in the market. The edge that they have over other sitemaps is the manner in which they are installed and operated. With Shopify generating the sitemaps automatically for the different domains clients might be operating within Shopify, it is possible to initiate and submit sitemap files.

The advantages associated with the simple addition of sitemap files to your website are undeniable and simultaneously numerous. To reap from the hard work sown into optimizing your website and generating engaging content for users on the internet, it is imperative for web designers to incorporate sitemaps into the framework that makes the foundation of their website.

Shopify is a trusted partner that aims to grow with your business and, in the process, improve the overall traffic generated for your website. To take part in this business opportunity is as simple as opening up an account with Shopify and enjoying the various benefits that come with being a member of the Shopify family, among which is access to sitemap file services.

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